Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Guest Post ~ Bruce Skye


A former technical writer, detail is important to Bruce Skye. His research for the Deathsong Chronicles included medieval armor and fortresses, as well as Celtic names and magic. "If you create a world, it must be consistent. And that's what I strive for Grayrider's world to be. I've built a database of material for each of the Deathsong Chronicles. Those databases aid me in keeping the world the same from book to book.

"When I wrote Grayrider, I followed the advice of Stephen King. I did not write the book following any sort of outline. I have no more idea than my readers do when I write a novel what will happen in the midst of the story. It makes it more exciting for both the readers and myself."

You can visit his website at


Gabriel, the exiled king of Rivalin, comes before King Airell to warn him the Ansgarian army will invade his kingdom before the night is over. Airell tells him he has no one to send. Gabriel wants revenge for the murder of his family by the Ansgarians. He decides to fight the incursion without help.

As this takes place, Deirdre (Airell’s daughter), flees the kingdom of Cynyr north of Boadhagh. She knows now her mentor, Morrigan, created the Ansgarian army her father has fought for years. She goes south to warn him of her. Because Deirdre does not believe in herself, the young sorceress has difficulty in performing magic.

Once she is reunited with her father, she tells both he and Grayrider about Morrigan. Her power is growing; only Gabriel’s magical sword may yet destroy her. He must go to Cynyr to fight her. He agrees if Deirdre attends him, seeking her counsel. On that journey they fall in love and foil many efforts by Morrigan to kill Gabriel by both armies and sorcerers.

Grayrider fights Morrigan and sees his beloved slain by the sorceress before he is finally able to kill her. He returns to Rivalin brokenhearted. The ending is a complete surprise the reader will not expect at all.


Practical Advice for Beginning Fantasy Writers
by Bruce Skye

My advice for those wanting to become published in the fantasy genre will start with writing itself and go outward from there. And so, Grasshopper, be patient and all will become clear in time.

First of all, above all else, keep writing. Gene Roddenberry, the creator of Star Trek, said he did not understand how people could believe you could go out and bang out a bestseller without having to practice as an Olympic athlete does daily. He’s right. Stay at the keyboard. If you’re not willing to do that, you’re not a true writer.

Secondly, study fantasy authors you love and see how they do the essentials such as plot, characterization and dialogue. Adapt what you learn from them to your work.

Third, get people to read your writings. Writer’s groups are great for this. Get feedback and learn. If you can’t take criticism, you won’t succeed in this business. Writing is a craft. And you’ll never know it all. But if you’re willing to learn, you can and will succeed.

Fourth, when you see yourself ready to be published, get a literary agent. Agents know the people you can’t get to: editors of publishing houses. If you send your manuscript to these people, it will be tossed into the trash without a second thought. But, if the agent submits your writing to that same editor, he/she will examine it. Why? Because literary agents act like filters, siphoning off the bad stories and only submitting the stuff they know is good and will sell.

Fifth, stay away from POD publishers if at all possible. POD means Print On Demand. Many newspaper reviewers turn up their noses at works put out by such houses.

Finally, be willing and able to spend lots of money and time promoting your published novel to the public. You’ll discover you spend 50% of your time promoting and the other 50% on writing new material. I don’t know if it’s possible to have a bestseller if not published by a mainstream publishing house. But I’m trying.

1 comment:

Bruce Skye said...

I just wanted to thank Lori's Reading Corner for publishing my guest post.